A time for Love, Care and Respect

With businesses in New Hampshire now starting to open up, it is to be expected that some people will be excited, while others will return to outside activities with some trepidation. What makes sense for handling our interaction with other people is to be cautious and consider their needs as well as our own.

Steve Labbe, owner of Paradigm Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning told WKXL-talk show host Chris Ryan recently, “We are seeing an uptick in [community] activity. For example, [people are asking for] boiler work, and gas furnaces with AC. We have been hiring more people, including looking for a dispatcher.”

Chris replied, “So, you are going to be optimistic? What is your mindset behind hiring?”

“It’s simple, said Steve. “A business needs to have its doors open. We’re now marketing  through videos with people ‘coming in’ to us on Zoom [online video]. For example, last week a request for an Indirect water heater came in. I gave a quote and got the job. It was that quick. With Zoom they can hear me and see me, and that’s how we are closing deals.”

Chris said, “You have certainly been ahead of the curve with using technology to communicate with your customers. I can see you using it for more meetings and other purposes as well. Perhaps, even more than using the phone.”

Steve noted, “Yes, but you have to be careful. We have a lot of knowledge and provide good advice. Customers are fearful of the unknown. [Whether using the phone or Zoom] we try to advise them on what to do to be safe.”

He went on to say, “It’s interesting. More people are being receptive to change. Consider when I quote – I do not have to go out to a customer’s house every time like I used to. With Zoom, the quote process can be done in 20 minutes. That saves a boat-load of time and can be reflected in the price to the customer.”

Chris commented, “Main street is now opening up. But it’s been difficult for businesses having to adapt to survive. There’s also a difference with your business, where you are entering into people’s homes. What do they ask you about safety and PPE? And how does Paradigm compare to other businesses preparing for consumers re-entering their establishments?”

Steve responded, “Many people invite me in. [I realize] that we have to be loving, caring and respectful. Of course, we still have freedoms in this world. That is important.” He added, “Wearing a mask and not shaking hands,  I am showing my respect. But I also know other people have rights too” [and may not choose to wear a mask.

Chris pondered, “Where does one person’s freedom infringe on another’s? I respect all people involved. But I think there is a difference about wearing a mask while jogging or on the golf course verses visiting your 91-year old grandmother. You have to pick your spots. Eliminate risk. It depends on the environment. Guidance, not law should be followed in-line with NH values.”

He went on to add, “What is the best thing to do? Limit risk. A person has the freedom of not wearing a mask. But you would hope that people will respect others. There is a fine line on both sides, leading to the conflict we see. We need to be cautious around our elderly.”

Steve mentioned, “I do it with my parents. I wear a mask, no close contact, no hugging, and we keep our distance. I am just trying to go-the-distance, and that works for us. It is a difficult time. But there are other ways we can show people we acknowledge them. For example, I remember when I was in Jamaica, people would say ‘hello’ or ‘good morning’ by taking their right fist and tapping it on their heart while smiling. There are other things we can do besides shaking hands. This environment requires doing things differently. I have never had to self-quarantine before.”

As a final comment, Steve added, “You have to look at yourself and how you navigate this. I have not gotten into any arguments or fights – nothing crazy in ‘Steve-Labbe world’ during this pandemic. I am proud of me. That is what you have to do. You have to look at yourself and think, ‘OK  how am I behaving and being respectful? Do I need to make any adjustments?’ You are only in charge of yourself.”

As always, if you have plumbing, heating or air conditioning problems or questions, call us at Paradigm. We will handle your needs with love, care and respect.

Paradigm Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning​​
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